No timetable on WR's return

Updated: October 8, 2003, 6:33 PM ET
Associated Press

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Buffalo Bills receiver Eric Moulds was held out of practice on Wednesday with a strained groin and listed as doubtful for Buffalo's game against the New York Jets on Sunday.

Coach Gregg Williams said tests showed there was no damage beyond a strain but declined to put any timetable on his leading receiver's recovery.

"He's a quick healer and I know he will work as hard as he can to get back as fast as he can," Williams said.

As for the possibility of playing without Moulds this weekend, Williams said, "Injuries are part of this game. We'll have to adapt and go on. But don't count him out."

Appearing to walk stiffly, Moulds spent practice in sweatpants, although he did take part in throwing passes to receivers. He was unavailable for comment afterward, spending time in the trainers room undergoing treatment.

Moulds was hurt during the winning drive in Buffalo's 22-16 overtime win against Cincinnati last weekend.

After coming down with a 28-yard reception at the Bengals 7, Moulds was tackled by Kevin Kaesviharn and tumbled awkwardly along the sideline. Moulds was on his back and appeared to cover his eyes with his hands. He remained there as Travis Henry scored two plays later on a 2-yard plunge.

The Bills (3-2) cannot afford to lose Moulds who, beyond quarterback Drew Bledsoe, is the team's most productive offensive player and ranks second in the AFC with 457 yards receiving..

Moulds' production makes up more than one third of the 1,376 yards net offense Buffalo has accumulated in its first five games this season.

"Obviously we lean on Eric fairly heavily," Bledsoe said. "He's one of the best players in the league and generally when we take the field we feel like he's the best guy out there ... If Eric is not able to go that does hurt us offensively."

Moulds is coming off a career year in which he set a franchise record with 100 receptions, and finished fourth in the NFL with 1,292 yards receiving.

The Bills next two receivers have struggled, particularly Josh Reed, who has dropped several easy passes and has so far failed to replace Peerless Price, whom Buffalo traded to Atlanta last March.

Reed ranks third among Bills receivers with 11 catches for 132 yards, behind Bobby Shaw's 20 catches for 284 yards.

"I don't think this puts any more pressure on him," Williams said of Reed. "He has to perform to his own abilities ... Anything extra is gravy."

Without Moulds, the Bills would have to elevate two untested rookies: undrafted free agent Clarence Coleman, fourth-round pick Sam Aiken. Coleman doesn't have a catch this season, Aiken has been inactive.

The Bills have also sputtered running the ball, averaging 58.4 yards rushing per game, a reason their offense ranks 30th in the NFL.

Bills defensive tackle Sam Adams (sprained right ankle) is listed as questionable after being hurt on Sunday. Backup running back Sammy Morris (sports hernia) is out and will miss his third straight game.

The Bills have also sputtered running the ball, averaging 58.4 yards rushing per game, a reason their offense ranks 30th in the NFL.

Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press